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Nintendo Switch Sales Are Slowing Down, No New Hardware Confirmed For This Fiscal Year

Nintendo Switch console sales declined by 22% in the 2023 financial year, and the company expects fewer sales over the next 12 months.

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In its results for the fiscal year that ended on March 31, 2023, Nintendo has reported that Switch hardware sales declined by 22%, as the company only sold 17.97 million consoles during that 12-month period. Nintendo expects this decline to continue through its next fiscal year, which will end on March 31, 2024, and is predicting an additional 16.5% decline, or around 15 million consoles that'll be sold over the next year. In total, Nintendo has sold 125.6 million Switch consoles since it launched in 2017. In comparison, Sony's PS5 sales stand at 38.4 million lifetime sales to date, with 6.3 million consoles shipping in the January-March period this year.

"Nintendo Switch has entered its seventh year since launch, and while it will become more challenging to maintain the same sales momentum as before, our goal is to have more consumers continue to play Nintendo Switch for longer, leading to maximized sales," Nintendo said in a statement. The global semiconductor shortage was partly attributed to the decline in sales, as well as a decrease in sales from last year's holiday season.

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The company has once again confirmed that no new hardware will ship this fiscal year, and in a call after the financial results were posted, president Shuntaro Furukawa added that Nintendo's 15 million Switch sales goal for the next year will be challenging.

"Sustaining the Switch's sales momentum will be difficult in its seventh year," Shuntaro Furukawa said to Bloomberg (via VGC). "Our goal of selling 15 million units this fiscal year is a bit of stretch. But we will do our best to bolster demand going into the holiday season so that we can achieve the goal."

On the software front, Nintendo has now shipped 1.036 billion Switch games since 2017, beating the record of 948.7 million shipped games that was previously held by the Nintendo DS family of handheld consoles. Financially, Nintendo says that net sales were down 5.5% at $12.56 billion and net profit decreased by 9.4% at $3.2 billion. While game sales were down 8.9% year-on-year, they were still strong according to Nintendo and saw 213.96 million units shipped during the fiscal year. It's worth noting that digital sales, including Nintendo Switch Online subscriptions, did increase by 12.7% during this period, and accounted for $3 billion in revenue.

Pokemon Violet and Scarlet has shipped 22.1 million copies as of March 31, 2023, Fire Emblem Engage shipped 1.61 million units, Mario Strikers: Battle League shipped 3.1 million units, and Splatoon 3 shipped 10.6 million units within their respective launch dates until the end of the 2023 fiscal year. 35 titles sold over one million units each, and of these games, 22 of them were published by Nintendo.

Looking ahead, Nintendo still has The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom releasing this week, Pikmin 4 in July, and expansions for Pokemon Scarlet and Violet arriving later in the year, which the company expects to deliver some serious sales momentum. "Other software publishers also plan to release a wide variety of titles, and we will work to invigorate the platform by supplementing existing titles with a continuous stream of new titles and add-on content," Nintendo said.

Darryn Bonthuys on Google+

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